A woman caught illegally selling abortion pills pleaded guilty to conspiracy earlier this year, and was sentenced to two years probation plus $10,000 in fines. She also has been ordered to pay $61,753—the cost of the pills she sold between 2016 and 2018.
Ursula Wing was caught running her illegal scheme in 2019. According to an article praising her in Mother Jones, Wing originally began selling abortion pills to pay for an expensive custody dispute, but continued to sell them to undermine abortion laws. “Unjust laws should not be respected,” she told Mother Jones, and explained that she hoped others would follow her lead. “I want some copycats. There’s not enough people doing this.”
Prosecutors said Wing used her jewelry business as a front. She imported the abortion drugs mifepristone and misoprostol from India and sold them in kits for $85. She had no license to sell or ship the drugs, and lied on customs forms, saying the pills were for her own use. When customers paid for the pills, she would record the purchases as jewelry. It is believed she sold pills to at least 2,000 women before being caught—yet women were not Wing’s only customers.
One of Wing’s male customers is currently being charged with first-degree attempted homicide. Jeffrey Smith from Grand Rapids, Wisconsin, bought the pills from Wing and tried to slip the drugs into his girlfriend’s water bottle when he found out she was pregnant. When the girlfriend noticed a residue in the water, she took the bottle to police, where it tested positive for mifepristone. Computer searches and drug packets led police to Wing. His trial is scheduled for December.
Despite the cheerleading from abortion activists, prosecutors refused to understate the dangers of Wing’s illegal activities. “Prescription drugs that are obtained illegally from online sources and then sold online to consumers can cause serious harm,” said Lynda M. Burdelik, Special Agent in Charge of the FDA Office of Criminal Investigations Chicago Field Office. “We will continue to investigate and bring justice to those who place the public’s health at risk.”
The abortion industry falsely portrays abortion pills as effectively harmless. In addition, ordering pills online without a doctor’s supervision or knowledge is even more dangerous.
It’s extremely unlikely that women are made aware of potential side effects, which on the milder end can include cramping, nausea, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. More serious complications are also possible, such as uterine hemorrhaging, viral infections, sepsis, vaginitis, and even death. Women have described their experiences with the abortion pill regimen in horrifying terms, saying it was “the most physically and emotionally painful thing,” “emotionally scarring and physically horrible,” and “the most painful experience ever in my life.” Other women reported bleeding for months afterwards. And by ordering the pills online, no one will be accurately determining gestational age or the absence of an ectopic pregnancy, either of which which can lead to serious or even life-threatening complications.
In addition to these potential issues, Wing seemed to have no concern for the potential sale of abortion pills to people like Smith. She didn’t verify that her buyers were actually women who wanted abortions, as opposed to men hoping to force women into one. Sadly, coerced abortions are far from rare.
Wing and her fellow abortion activists tried to portray her illegal activities—selling unregulated, unlicensed abortion pills to anyone with money for her—as pro-woman activism. In reality, Wing’s actions endangered women.
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